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Namibia

Almost half a million Namibians experience a food insecurity crisis – UNICEF

todayMay 29, 2024 4

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By Selma Taapopi, via News on One

 

 

A total of 491,000 Namibians(19% of the population) are categorised as being in a food security crisis, specifically in phase 3 of the Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC). This is according to the Livelihood Vulnerability Assessment Analysis report for October 2023 to March 2024.

The report estimates that at least 20 756 women and 36 900 children nationally need nutrition interventions.

This was shared by UNICEF during the recent handover of US Agency for International Development (USAID)  Ready-to-Use Therapeutic Food (RUTF) valued at N$900 000  to the Ministry of Health and Social Services (MoHSS).

UNICEF representative Samuel Ocran in remarks delivered on his behalf by UNICEF Namibia deputy representative, Tashiko Takahashi, stated that the majority of malnutrition-related deaths among Namibian children are due to food insecurity, adding that UNICEF remains committed to addressing malnutrition in the country.

“The same report indicates that 86% of districts in Namibia are also in IPC phase 3. Furthermore, the report shows a 13% increase in acute malnutrition caseload between 2022 and 2023, with 10, 848 children reported hospitalisation and treatment which will put a strain on the health system nationally,” stated Takahashi.

Speaking at the handover occasion of the 14 metric tons of Ready-to-Use Therapeutic Food,

U.S. Ambassador to Namibia, Randy Berry, said the donation will help save the lives of more than 1 000 Namibian children suffering from severe acute malnutrition.

“According to the latest Integrated Food Security Phase Classification Report, one in five Namibians go to bed regularly on a hungry stomach and are considered to be food insecure. These are not just numbers, they are alarming statistics that demand our immediate attention” Berry stressed.

Deputy Minister of Health and Social Services, Esher Muinjangue, said the Ready-to-Use Therapeutic Food will be distributed to hospital paediatric wards, health centres as well as clinics, targeting beneficiaries who are pregnant or have given birth and children under 15 years diagnosed with severe acute malnutrition.

Written by: Dilia Mazula

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